Although it is a commonly held belief that criminal arrests are made immediately after an alleged crime has been committed, many criminal offenses require an extensive investigation conducted by law enforcement prior to any arrests. This pre-investigative process can be stressful to manage. Being the suspect or even a material witness of a potential crime may be unnerving without the experienced aid of a criminal defense attorney. Many of your rights and liberties may be jeopardized throughout this process.
You should take the necessary precautions to avoid incriminating yourself during this process. However, that may prove to be difficult with some of the tactics law enforcement can employ. If you want to protect yourself the best you can while you are being investigated, hiring a criminal defense lawyer is the best way to do so.
You do not need to answer any questions asked by law enforcement without your criminal defense attorney present. Let my law firm help you during the pre-arrest investigation phase of a case today. Doing so may even increase your chances of avoiding an arrest altogether.
How Can a Criminal Defense Lawyer Protect My Rights?
Law enforcement gathers detailed information during the pre-arrest investigative phase of a case. During this time, officials may try to informally interrogate you by showing up unannounced at your home or even your place of work to probe into your personal affairs and develop evidence needed to formally arrest and charge you. Hiring a criminal defense attorney in Fort Myers can be critical at this juncture.
Your attorney can represent you whenever law enforcement desires to question you or delve into your private life. You have rights, and a criminal defense attorney can protect them at every turn.
Is Hiring a Criminal Defense Attorney Prior to an Arrest Worth It?
It can be much more costly to not take action right away than it is to hire a criminal defense lawyer as soon as possible. On top of potentially helping you avoid being arrested, a criminal defense lawyer can begin an investigation of their own in order to build a strong criminal defense case in the event you are eventually arrested or charged with a crime. Getting ahead and intervening early can help you get the best possible outcome for your case.
Additionally, retaining a criminal defense attorney early and before an arrest can also help to ensure that you have an attorney present if and when you are formally arrested. Trying to vet and hire an attorney from a jail cell or through a third party can result in being unhappy with your counsel. After most felony arrests and even some misdemeanor arrests such as for domestic violence, you will need to see a judge, usually within 24 hours of your arrest, to set bail and impose special conditions of that bail such as not having contact with alleged victim.
Having an attorney on retainer before your arrest will guarantee that you will have an attorney present at that hearing, called first appearance, to argue for a reasonable bail amount and for reasonable bail conditions. Taking your chances without an attorney or with a temporarily appointed attorney at your first appearance can result in a higher bail amount than you initially expected or with unreasonable bail conditions such as being ordered to stay away from your own home even if the alleged victim does not live there. Don’t take that chance, hire an attorney the moment the police start snooping around your affairs.
What Should I Do Soon After I’ve Been Accused of a Crime?
As soon as you have been accused of a crime or have law enforcement inquiring about you in relation to criminal activity, even if it just as a witness, seek the legal assistance of a criminal defense lawyer in Fort Myers. Doing so can help you avoid being arrested, get your strong criminal defense started early, and have an attorney at the ready to appear at your first appearance. Call (239) 284-5708 as soon as you can to learn more about the pre-arrest investigative phase of a criminal case and how the Sherman Defense Law Firm, P.A. can help.